Friday, August 10, 2007

Speedlinking 8/10/07

Quote of the day:

"Too many have dispensed with generosity in order to practice charity."
~ Albert Camus

Image of the day (David Winston):


BODY
~ 20 Most Popular Health Websites -- "Here are the 20 Largest Health Websites ranked by a combination of Inbound Links, Google Page Rank, Alexa Rank, and U.S. traffic data from Compete and Quantcast. Although no traffic metrics are completely accurate we do believe the data below to be useful for gauging relative audience size."
~ Diet Or Exercise? New Study Finds Sugar Is Important In Obesity, UK -- "Scientists at the Medical Research Council have found that eating more sugar is associated with obesity. Although this may seem obvious, previous studies, which relied on self-reporting of diet, had not shown that this was the case. But researchers from the Medical Research Council and University of Cambridge looking into the links between diet and cancer have developed a new way of objectively measuring sugar consumption."
~ Middle Age Spread: Getting Fatter But Not Heavier -- "Researchers have discovered that middle age spread seems to have an effect on waistlines but not weight as people get older. Researchers, funded by the Medical Research Council, have found that people in early middle age seem to put on more weight more quickly than people slightly older. But the waistlines of the older group seem to grow more quickly."
~ Omega-3 Fatty Acids: A Way To Improve Heart Health -- "While a heart-healthy diet has become synonymous with plenty of fruits and vegetables and little fat and cholesterol, there's more to the story. Omega-3 fatty acids should be part of a heart-healthy diet, too, according to the August issue of Mayo Clinic Health Letter. Omega-3 fatty acids are a form of polyunsaturated fat important to overall health."
~ Olive Oil -- Reaping Its Health Benefits -- "Among cooking oils, olive oil is touted as one of the healthiest. Olive oil contains monounsaturated fat, which can lower total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL or "bad") cholesterol in the blood. Choosing olive oil is a bit like choosing wine. There are different grades, and some are more flavorful and offer more health benefits. The August issue of Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource offers tips on choosing an olive oil."
~ Migraine With Aura Linked To Stroke Risk In Women, US Study -- "A new US study suggests that women who have migraines with aura (seeing spots and flashing lights), particularly those who smoke or use oral contraceptives, are at increased risk of having a stroke compared with women who do not have migraines."
~ Green tea boosts production of detox enzymes, rendering cancerous chemicals harmless -- "Concentrated chemicals derived from green tea dramatically boosted production of a group of key detoxification enzymes in people with low levels of these beneficial proteins, according to researchers at Arizona Cancer Center."


PSYCHE
~ Subject of Harvard’s Most Popular Course — Self Improvement -- "Professor Tal Ben Shahar teaches the largest course at Harvard on “Positive Psychology” and the third largest on “The Psychology of Leadership“–with a total of over 1,400 students." With video of his appearance on The Daily Show.
~ Dopamine Abnormality in ADHD [The Corpus Callosum] -- "A while back, Shelly wrote a nice introduction to ADHD at Retrospectacle: The Neuroscience of ADHD. Read that first, for background, then consider this to be a minor addendum. There are still people who believe that ADHD is not real. This is a good example of the scientific findings to the contrary. It is an open-access article (there is one every month) at Archives of General Psychiatry." Links to the full article.
~ The Damaging Relationship -- "Why smart women make dumb mistakes about men."
~ Mating: The Right Choice -- "Choosing the right partner."
~ How to Spot Mr. Right -- "Do opposites really attract?"
~ Spanish Study Links Depression And Genetic, Environmental Factors -- "In spite of the fact that the causes of depression have still not been fully identified, scientists acknowledge that genetic and environmental factors play a common role in the onset of this disorder. One of the environmental risk factors more often related to depression is exposure to threatening life events. On the other hand, from a genetic point of view, the serotonin transporter gene, with a crucial role in communication between neurons, could predispose a person to depression."
~ Conscious and Unconscious -- "Conscious and unconscious phases of evolution are leading us to one goal. Until today, we have evolved unconsciously, and from today onward, we can evolve consciously."
~ Functioning Neurons Produced From Human Embryonic Stem Cells -- "Scientists with the Institute of Stem Cell Biology and Medicine at UCLA produced a highly pure, large quantity of functioning neurons from human embryonic stem cells."


CULTURE/POLITICS
~ The Political Teachings of Jesus -- "The Sermon on the Mount has long been rightly understood as both a starting-point and a summation of Jesus 's teaching. It begins with the Beatitudes (Mt. 5:3-12), in which Jesus delineates the categories of people he says enjoy special favor. The Beatitudes are all familiar to us as sayings, the best known being blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. But what, really, are they?" Good article.
~ How parents can battle power of McBranding -- "A study published this week proved what many parents already know: Nothing gets kids salivating like the McDonald’s logo. How are parents supposed to compete ? By stealing McDonald’s marketing strategies, of course."
~ Wall Street Pros Explain Falling Stock Market -- "U.S. News asked some of Wall Street's top market strategists to explain the recent stock market plunge. Here's their take on whether the worse is over for investors or the pain is just beginning."
~ The Democrats' "gay debate" dance -- "At a forum on LGBT rights, the issue of same-sex marriage left the Democratic presidential front-runners looking like they had two left feet."
~ Clift: Is Newt Gingrich Poised for a Comeback? -- "Newt Gingrich carries some political baggage, but he knows how to shake up the system. It may be just what America needs for 2008."
~ Emily Brontë is 'top romantic novel' -- "News: The passionate story has beaten countless steamy successors in a poll of the greatest love stories of all time."


HABITATS/TECHNOLOGY
~ Monsanto Workers Ban GMO Foods from Their Own Cafeteria -- "The fight to ban genetically modified foods has won more converts -- some employees of Monsanto, the company that is doing the most to promote GM products." WOW, the irony is staggering.
~ Farewell to the Yangtze River Dolphin -- "Scientists say the species is probably extinct, the victim of overfishing and environmental degradation on China's crowded waterway."
~ Arctic sea ice 'lowest in recorded history': scientists -- "Sea ice in the northern hemisphere has plunged to the lowest levels ever measured, US polar specialists said, adding they expect the record low to be "annihilated" by summer's end."
~ Bisphenol, Eh? -- "Bisphenol-A (BPA) has been making a lot of news this week as a group of 38 independent scientists sounded the alarm concerning health risks posed by the chemical, which is used in the manufacture of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins and is commonly found in such things as (ee gads!) baby bottles and sippy cups -- not to mention canned goods and water bottles." Lots of links to resources for avoiding the health risks posed by this chemical -- as well as an NIH denial of risk (of course).
~ Perseid Meteors to Light Skies Sunday -- "The annual meteor shower dazzled under a nearly new moon."
~ Animal of the Week -- "Provided by the Wildlife Conservation Society, only on LiveScience!"
~ Greatest Mysteries: What Causes Gravity? -- "Science can measure gravity, but its source eludes discovery."


INTEGRAL/BUDDHIST
~ The Matrix Revealed: It Begins! and The Matrix Decoded -- Julian Walker is going to explicate the Matrix series -- probably from an integral perspective (haven't had a chance to read these yet).
~ Oppression Stories -- "I have been traveling. In my mind, that is. I have been reading novels. They have transported me effortlessly through time and space, and given me hours of out-of-this body experience. It has been a while since I spent so much time in novel-land, and I had almost forgotten what a pleasure it can be. Let me tell you..."
~ How the law of asymmetric competition should affect innovation policy -- "I was just alerted, by our resident neonomad pattern recognizer Dante, of a research disseration regarding competitiveness in a knowledge base economy."
~ Dzogchen, Madhyamika, Shentong & Rigpa -- "I’m having a discussion with a Dzogchen practitioner and scholar about the nature of rigpa, which he says is not metaphysical yet it is still unconditioned. I brought up the rangtong-shentong debate (see Jackson below), because it seems that Dzogchen is still retaining the notion of an “unconditioned” state that is not the same as the “conditional,” conventional reality. I.e., the dichotomy of the two truths instead of their identity."
~ From Syria to Singapore: Center For Human Emergence-Middle East -- "Dr. Beck and I had a busy schedule in July. While Dr Beck's presentations and meetings in many countries had a wider scope and focus on Global Change " From Clash to Confluence of Civilizations," with an emphasis on the most pressing issue of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict and the model we are co-designing with our Palestinian partners for Build Palestine Initiative. My presentations and meetings focused on the Emergence of Arab women and their vital role in solving Middle East problems, as well as the role of the affluent Arab community in London, and a starting project with the European Union in Syria."


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